|I've written recently about two Stone Soup authors who have published their own books. This week, I'd like to introduce you to Rachel Alana, who illustrated several stories for the magazine about fifteen years ago as Rachel Stanley. You can find examples of her work in these links:
Rachel, as she puts it, "has been drawing all [her] life." You can see more of her work, and learn more about who Rachel is through her website and her Instagram page.
I know that most Stone Soup illustrators have several years of serious drawing behind them before their first publication in the magazine. I also now that when you are ten or twelve one of the great questions that you have is, what will I become? My daughter, who will be eleven in two weeks, often asks me, "Dada, what I will be?" Of course, I have no idea, except she has said since she was six that she wants to be a scientist, and I think that is very likely. Some of you reading this will likewise become artists and writers.
If you are an adult, and a former Stone Soup writer or illustrator and are still writing and doing art—whether professionally or as a hobby—please let me know by replying to this newsletter. I will be on vacation for a couple weeks, so I won't respond until mid-August but am excited to hear from you. We are thinking of devoting a place on our Stone Soupwebsite to former contributors and former members of the Honor Roll.
I chose to feature this drawing of Rachel's because it happens to be a drawing of me! Well, not really of me, personally, but it is a drawing of a boy playing with a boat in a French park. One of my strongest childhood memories is playing with a boat in the Tuileries Garden in the summer of 1963. Every time I go to Paris I pause by that place, even when it is winter and the boats are all put away. I will say that seeing the park does make me sad, as does Rachel's drawing, because my mother died about ten years later, and playing with those little boats with your mother on a hot summer afternoon in Paris is about as wonderful an afternoon as one will ever have. So boys playing in parks with toy boats always makes me think of her.
This one of the great powers of art. To take us someplace else. Back in time. Forward in time to a place that will never really exist. Into the lives of others, or back into one's own life, but a part of one's life that was long ago.
Going on vacation, so until mid-August!
Founder & Executive Director